Are you ready for ACE?

updated September 15, 2015

Much of the trade community has voiced their opinion that they are not ready for U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s mandatory ACE deadline of November 1, 2015, so the deadline has been pushed back until February 28, 2016.

Not everyone is ready, but we can assure you that we are.

As an importer, we advise you to ask your current Customs Broker these questions:

  • Are you transitioned to file via ACE?
  • Are you ready to electronically file my entries by November 1, 2015?

As a U.S. Customs Broker, our reply is this:

“Importers and clients… we are ready!”

In fact, Scarbrough International, Ltd. will be participating along with U.S. Commercial Service of Kansas City and the World Trade Center of Kansas City in an ACE Workshop on November 4, 2015 in Kansas City.

Register for CES/CCS credits now.



What is the deadline for?

The deadline mandates that all electronic entries and corresponding entry summaries, which includes the CBP form 3461 and 7501, are filed in the Automated Commercial Environment by February 28.  Anyone who is not filing in the Automated Commercial Environment by this date could face significant delays in cargo processing and it will affect release of goods at the border, as well.

If you are partnering with Scarbrough International, Ltd. as your U.S. Customs Broker, then no need to worry.

Why is Scarbrough so ahead of the game?

Scarbrough was one of 20 U.S. Customs Brokers to pilot the program back in 2009 and was recognized by Acting Assistant Commissioner of the Office of International Trade at the time, Robert DiNucci.  Our expertise on ACE extends beyond that of a typical broker.  Scarbrough’s Vice President of Operations, Adam Hill is a member of the Automation Sub-Committee under the Customs Committee for the National Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA). He also serves as a member of the US Customs and Border Protection Trade Support Network (TSN), where he provides input on the design and development of modernization projects, like ACE. Mr. Hill is also a member of the eBond committee of the TSN which serves as the trade point of contact with CBP on the design of the new eBond regulations, process, and trade implementation.

What is eBond and how does it relate to ACE?  Find out more here.


Mr. Hill has been able to help shape Scarbrough as an industry leader in terms of U.S. Customs Brokerage and technology. If you want to learn more about ACE or how you can partner with Scarbrough by using our services, please email Adam Hill directly at




What dates should I note?

Information released by CBP sets forth the following schedule.

Nov. 1 – Beginning of a transition period for electronic entry and entry summary filings in ACE to allow industry and participating government agencies more time to test and provide feedback as they fully transition to the new system. The use of ACE will be allowed and encouraged for electronic entry and corresponding entry summary filings for entry types 01, 03, 11, 51 and 52, with or without PGA data.

Feb. 28, 2016 – ACE must be used and the Automated Commercial System will no longer be available for the filing of all electronic entries and associated entry summaries. In addition, electronic Food and Drug Administration, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (Lacey Act) data must be filed in ACE and ACS will no longer be available.

July 2016 (date to be determined) – Upon publication of a final rule by CBP, ACE must be used for filing data for the following agencies: Agricultural Marketing Service, APHIS (core), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Defense Contract Management Agency, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, Drug Enforcement Agency Enforcement and Compliance, Environmental Protection Agency, Food Safety and Inspection Service, Fish and Wildlife Service (contingent on FWS having its regulatory revisions in place before the CBP final rule is published), National Marine Fisheries Service and Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. Hybrid submissions will no longer be allowed.

CBP notes that these changes do not affect the Oct. 1, 2016, deadline for mandatory use of ACE for all remaining electronic portions of the CBP cargo process.